Munich – City of Light

Ideas for a dazzling trip to Munich in spring 2020

No more darkness: Light means quality of life, and makes us happy. Munich offers plenty of opportunities at the start of the year to really take your fill of luxury and luminosity while spring is still in the air. The city shines far beyond as a wide-awake, dynamic and international metropolis. It‘s home to great creativity and innovation. Munich turns on the lights for you – in all its facets! Here, you will find inspiring ideas for a spring trip to Munich.

Soak up the sun – Favourite spots of Munich residents

Munich is the perfect place if you‘re craving colour, warmth and indulgence. No other city in Germany enjoys as much sunshine. A full 1,756 hour each year. It‘s particularly lovely in the springtime!

Favourite spots for a stroll or a sunset snapshot, unparalleled in dramatic beauty particularly at this time of year, include the Englischer Garten (park), the Olympiaberg (Olympic Mountain) and Olympiaturm (Olympic Tower), the Nymphenburger Schlosspark (Nymphenburg Palace Park) and the Isar floodplains. From the moment the first rays of sunshine appear, half the city is outside in front of the cafés, in the beer gardens and restaurants and celebrates the lightness of being.

Climb the Olympic stadium – “Easter light“

The walkway across the canvas roof of Munich‘s Olympiastadion (Olympic Stadium) is spectacular, and the light in the springtime is simply magical. Togged up like setting out on an expedition, a guide leads visitors, who are secured with ropes and carabiners, along a footbridge along the edge of the roof to one of the pillars supporting the cable mesh construction of the Olympia roof.

At sunset, the glow of sun going down, the silence, the shimmering lights of the city, the breathtaking panoramic views over Munich and the fascinating architecture of the stadium only intensify the experience. A special highlight for 2020: there will for the first time be a tour of the canvas roof on Easter Sunday to mark the “Festival of Light“.

Registrations and further tour offers can be found under:


Bejewelled light

Every five year, the Danner-Rotunde, the jewellery room of the Pinakothek der Moderne (art gallery) become bathed in a new light. Nowhere else in Europe does contemporary jewellery sit side-by-side with art, architecture, graphics and design, at home in its own permanent exhibition. A team of curators will now link Asia to Europe for the first time. Mikiko Minewaki, lecturer at the Hiko Mizuno College in Tokyo, Professor Hans Stofer, former head of the jewellery class at the Royal College in London and now at the Burg Giebichenstein University of Art and Design in Halle, and the Munich artist Alexander Blank will present their selection of jewellery art from the 20th and 21st centuries.

And the Danner-Rotunde will quite literally be immersed in a different light. The well-known Munich lighting designer Flavia Thumshirn is designing a new light system for the windows, while Yang Liu Design of Berlin is creating a neon script installation to illuminate the entrance area to the jewellery room.

The Danner-Rotunde reopens on 13 March 2020

A giant of light

Ingo Maurer (1932 – 2019) said that good light is a key to happiness. Paper, porcelain, plastic mice – this Munich man made everything light up. His “Bulb“, created in 1966, was seen as a milestone in the history of modern design (a lamp in the form of a light bulb).

But Maurer wasn‘t just interested in the technology. From the light bulb and halogen to organic light diodes, he dealt critically with the development of light. As a pioneer of lighting design, Ingo Maurer continues the series in the Paternoster Hall to which‚ “The New Collection – The Design Museum“ invites leading figures in design each year.

“Ingo Maurer intim. Design or what?“ exhibition
15 November 2019 - 20 October 2020


Vortex of light and starry skies

On entering the atrium at the Lenbachhaus (art gallery) you‘ll be spellbound by the “Vortex Work“ by the Icelandic / Danish artist Olafur Eliasson. A spectacular spiral made up of 450 glass triangles lit from within projects it shadows and lights on the surrounding walls. Sparkling in all the colours of the rainbow, it lights the way to a select collection that combines three hundred years of art history.

Established by the Munich painter prince Franz von Lenbach (1836 – 1904), the museum continues to deliver on its founder‘s vision of uniting European art with the present. In keeping with this tradition, from 30 March 2020 the Lenbachhaus will be displaying an individual collection by the Indian artist Sheela Gowda (*1957), whose work shines a critical light on day-to-day life in India. A highlight of the exhibition in the Kunstbau (subterranean gallery) is the “Darkroom“. This installation of oil drums is reminiscent of a slum house. Creep inside and on the inside you‘ll discover a starry sky. The dark room is thus transformed into a symbol of light and hope.

“Sheela Gowda“ exhibition
31 March - 26 July 2020
Art Building, Lenbachhaus

A new supernova over Munich

Over 2,000 square metres of exhibition space, 109 seats, and breathtaking guided tours: The ESO Supernova Planetarium in Garching is the biggest planetarium in the German-speaking region. The 360-degree cupola has a diameter of 14 metres, and tilts at 25 degrees. Interactive stations explain the vast expanses of the universe to children and adults alike. The planetarium show and guided tours have to be paid for, but the exhibition itself is free of charge.


Endless stars

They are very rare nowadays: places were the night sky can be viewed in all its glory, undisturbed by artificial light. If you‘re keen to count endless stars, head from Munich out towards Chiemgau. Here, on the Winklmoosalm at Reit im Winkl, you can experience the first “dark skies“ spot in the Alps.

The area is one of four recognised dark skies areas in Germany, all of them far away from the interference of artificial light. Night here really means night. Experience the wonder of the stars either under your own steam, or on a guided tour with the astronomer and physicist Manuel Philipp.

Video: spot on: spring

Utopia in the heart of Munich

Creating a utopia means painting the future in its best light. What if, for once, high, sub and club culture came together in one place and together created something completely new? There would be great theatre, dance performances, art exhibitions, parties in amongst, yoga and concerts. It would be a mesh of opera-lovers and club-goers. Of young and old. Of artists and start-ups. It would be a place that, over the years, would develop dynamically.

Totally utopian? Not at all! At the end of 2019, the 1,200m² “Reithalle“ listed building in the heart of Schwabing district housed the experiment known as ‚Utopia‘. Be a part of it!


Interactive ballet – the audience in the spotlight

She is one of the best-known female figures in the New Testament, even though her name is never mentioned in the bible. Hers is a story of unrequited love: Salome dances, and turns the heads of all the men around her. Only John the Baptist want nothing to do with her. If she can‘t have him alive, she wants him dead! John the Baptist ends up being beheaded.

According to legend. But what if it had all turned out differently? The Gärtnerplatztheater (theatre) is braving the experiment: Head up or head down? The audience decides – and every show is different! The production team around the Israeli choreographer Eyal Dadon is embarking on an exciting journey, with goal of breaking through the fourth wall, and allowing the audience to engage with what happening. Ballet as an interactive, literally unique experience, always in a new light. Be a part of the action, and decide for yourself how Salome is portrayed!

“Salome‘s Dance“ ballet
28 February - 22 April 2020

Spring in Munich in 1919 – visual and audio depiction

Inn, cinema and theatre: The “Fraunhofer“ not only serves its guests traditional Bavarian dishes. It also delivers on things that have been a real treat on the cabaret stage for over 40 years – such as the visual and audio depiction of “Three-and-a-half weeks in Munich in the spring“.

A documentary takes visitors back on a journey to the Soviet Republic that emerged in Munich on 7 April 1919. What is day-to-day life like for the residents of Munich now? Will chaos and violence continue to reign? And: what song did people sing and whistle back then in the cafés and on the street of Munich? Based on original documents, photos and videos, the “Kollektiv Herzfeld“ (group of artists) dates this back to the spring of 1919. Contemporary of the era such as Thomas Mann get to speak, supported by live music. Traditional Fraunhofer theatre!        

The “Fraunhofer“
23 - 25 April 2020


Design connects!

Experience, try and get your hands on design in all its facets – all on the Long Week of Design. The Munich Creative Business Week will for the 9th time present the city as a super-lively design metropolis highlighted by exhibitions, previews and events that show the creativity of the artistic scene. Fully in line with concept of “Design connects!“, well-known designers from different disciplines meet upcoming talents and start-ups.

The Designschau! is a forum for creativity in the fields of art, fashion, interior and jewellery design, and brings together exhibitors and Lovers of design. Events such as the “Creative Night“, the Designkino (cinema) and the presentation of the Munich Fashion Award complete the varied programme. Under the motto “What motivates designers?!“, the design bus is doing the rounds of Munich with the dream team of Stefan Dietz & Prof. Tulga Beyerle and Mirko Borsche & Dr Angelika Nollert.

Munich Creative Business Week
7 - 15 March 2020

Up to the heart of the Werksviertel (quarter)

The area around the Ostbahnhof (Munich East train station) is the most exciting construction site in the city. Where Pfanni once produced dumplings is now a hotspot of the city. The concept is to combine living, working and leisure in perfect harmony, together with a cultural highlight: the concert hall of the Symphonic Orchestra of Bayerischer Rundfunk (Bavarian public radio and television broadcaster) is being built here.

The biggest attraction right now is the Umadum; no other moving big wheel reaches higher into the sky, according to the Guinness Book of Records. The gondolas reach almost 80 metres into the sky and the journey takes 30 minutes – including a unique view across Munich to the Alps.

Umadum in the centre of the Werksviertel (quarter)
(near to the Ostbahnhof)


MUCA Street Art Bike Tour

The tour starts at the “Illuminated MUCA Garden“ – the artistically designed front garden to the newly opened “MUCA Bunker“, which provides additional exhibition space immediately next to the museum. From there, you can cycle along the Isar to Munich‘s Street Art highlights. Stopping en route, you can take in interesting facts about the history of Street Art and about the art graffiti that all across the world have installed as beacons of light. The tour ends with a short tour of the MUCA, Germany‘s first museum of urban & contemporary art.

MUCA Street Art Bike Tour


On Street Art Safari through Munich

Expert and book author Martin Arz points out the best graffiti and murals during his well-researched Street Art Safari, the oldest tour of its type in the city. Over 60 urban works of art light up the walls of the Donnersberger Brücke (bridge). The route continues to the Candidplatz (square), where international superstars have worked the scene. The tour gives visitors a different insight into Munich as a city of art.

Street Art Safari



Photos: Christian Kasper, Lumenman


See you again in Munich! Hotels and guesthouses are looking forward to welcoming you, museums and galleries are open, guided tours are possible, and gastronomy is allowed to serve guests inside and outside. Strict hygiene regulations apply to all attractions and service providers. All important information about the coronavirus and your stay in Munich can be found here. See you soon in Munich!